AOPEN Chromebox Mini is Designed for Digital Signage and Kiosks

ChromeOS Digital Signage

Most ChromeOS devices are designed for either the consumer or educational markets, but Google’s operating system can also be used for commercial applications such as digital signage. A cheap way to set up a ChromeOS based digital is to get a ChromeBit (around $100 used) and install one of the Digital Signage apps for the OS. But as I checked out Linux 5.4 changelog, I came across AOPEN Chromebox Mini (codename Fievel) powered by a Rockchip RK3288 processor and described as an “enterprise-ready” Chromebox for 24/7 operation as digital signage or kiosk. AOPEN Chromebox Mini specifications: SoC – Rockchip RK3288C quad-core Cortex-A17 processor @ up to 1.8GHz with Arm Mali-T764MP GPU clocked at up to 600 MHz System Memory – Dual-channel 4GB LPDDR3 Storage – 16GB eMMC 5.0 flash Video Output – HDMI up to 1080p60 Audio – 1x combo jack with Line out/Line in Connectivity – Gigabit Ethernet, WiFi 802.11 b/g/n/ac + BT4.0 USB – 3x USB 2.0 ports …

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How to Sandbox an arm64 GCC on aarch64 Hardware with armv7 Userspace

Arm64 GCC Armv7 Userspace

CNXSoft: Guest post by Blu about setting up arm64 toolchain on 64-bit Arm hardware running a 32-bit Arm (Armv7) rootfs. Life is short and industry progress is never fast enough in areas we care about. That’s an observation most of us are familiar with. One would think that by now most aarch64 desktops would be running arm64 environments, with multi-arch support when needed. Alas, as of late 2019, chromeOS on aarch64 is still shipping an aarch64 kernel and an armhf userspace. And despite the fine job by the good folks at chromebrew, an aarch64 chromeOS machine in dev mode ‒ an otherwise excellent road-warrior ride, is stuck with 32-bit armhf. Is that a problem, some may ask? Yes, it is ‒ aarch64 is the objectively better arm ISA outside of MCUs, from gen-purpose code to all kinds of ISA extensions, SIMD in particular. That shows in contemporary compiler support and in the difference in quality of codegen. Particularly with the …

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AMD Ryzen Embedded R1000 powered Atari VCS Game Console is Now up for Pre-order for $249 and up

AMD Ryzen Embedded R1000 Game Console

Atari VCS game console had initially been teased with minimal information a few years ago, then delayed, and even when they launched an Indiegogo campaign last year, the specifications were not set in stone, and although we knew the company planned to use an AMD Ryzen processor, the final choice was announced later in April of this year: AMD Ryzen Embedded R1000 processor. Indiegogo backers should get their console in December 2019, but if you’re prudent with your own money, you may have preferred to wait, it’s now possible to get Atari VCS in March 2020 by pre-ordering it now for $249 and up from Walmart, Gamestop, or Atari’s own website. There will be two model with Atari VCS 800 and Atari VCS 400 sharing many of the same (preliminary) specifications except for the RAM capacity: SoC – AMD Ryzen Embedded R1000 dual-core / quad-thread processor with VEGA 3 graphics System Memory VCS 400 – 4GB DDR4 RAM (upgradable) VCS …

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Project Athena Specification 1.0 – Fast Response Times and Long Battery Life

Project Athena Specification 1.0

Project Athena innovation program aims to provide a set of guidelines for Windows or Chrome OS always-on always-connected laptop powered by Intel processor. At the time of the first announcement at CES 2019 few details were provided, but Intel has now released Project Athena 1.0 target specification which gives clearer details of what such laptops will have to offer. Intel also introduced new “key experience indicators” (KEI) aligned with real-world conditions in order to provide to best experience to end-users. Project Athena 1.0 target specification defines six key areas of innovation: Instant Action – Modern Connected Standby and Lucid Sleep (feature of Chrome OS) features implement fast wake with a simple lid-lift, push of a button or quick fingerprint recognition. System wake from sleep must occur in less than 1 second Performance and Responsiveness – Systems based on Intel Core i5 or i7 processors with Intel Dynamic Tuning Technology, a minimum of 8GB DRAM dual channel mode and at least …

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MediaTek MT8183 Octa-core Cortex A73/A53 SoC Targets Chromebooks

MediaTek MT8183

MediaTek processors have been found in a few Chromebooks notably in MediaTek MT8173 powered Acer Chromebook R13, but the quad-core Cortex A72/A53 processor hasn’t made it into many models like the hexa-core Rockchip RK3399 “OP1” processor. However, I’ve been informed there are a few patchsets that have been submitted to mainline Linux and V4L2 mailing lists about MediaTek MT8183 octa-core Cortex A73/A53 processor. The latter adds a Digital Image Processing (DIP) driver on MediaTek MT8183 SoC, “which will be used in camera features on CrOS application” and some code related to MT8183 is found in Chromium OS repository, so those clues should confirm the octa-core processor will end up in Chromebooks, with the current MT8183 reference board being named Kukui. There aren’t any product pages for MT8183 on MediaTek website just yet, but by looking at the source code (e.g. Device tree file), and some clues around the web, we can derive the main features of the processor: CPU – …

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HP Chromebook 11A G6 EE is Powered by AMD A4-9120C 6W Processor

AMD recently introduced the “new” AMD A6-9220C & A4-9120C low power processors specifically designed for Chromebooks. As pointed by CNX Software readers, AMD A6-9220 & A4-9120 processors (no “C”) have been around since 2016, and the just announced “C” (Chromebook) versions appears to be the same processors but with lower clock speed to meet the 6W TDP requirement. Two Chromebooks based on the new AMD processors – HP Chromebook 14 and Acer Chromebook 315 – were also showcased at CES 2019, and the former is now sold for  $269.99. HP has already announced another AMD Chromebook with a smaller 11.6″ display: HP Chromebook 11A G6 EE (Education Edition). This model is expected to launch in February with the following specifications: SoC – AMD A4-9120C dual core processor @ 1.6 GHz / 2.4 GHz  (Boost frequency), Radeon R4 graphics with 3 GPU Cores System Memory – 4GB of RAM Storage – 32GB eMMC 5.0 flash storage Display – 11.6″ display with …

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Intel Project Athena Defines Guidelines for Always-On 5G Laptops

Intel Project Athena

Arm, Qualcomm and their partners first introduced always-on always-connected mobile PCs running Windows 10 in 2017 with over 20 hours of battery life and LTE connectivity. The first models delivered on their battery life promise, but they were expensive while delivering underwhelming performance, but the upcoming Snapdragon 8cx processor should address performance concerns. Those type of laptops are still a niche market, and so far Intel and their partners have not delivered similar type of laptops with long battery life, cellular connectivity, and always-on capabilities. That’s where Intel’s Project Athena innovation program comes in. The program that defines a new class of advanced laptops running either Windows or Chrome OS operating systems, offering long battery life, 5G connectivity, artificial intelligence, and consistently powered on. They may not target the 20 hours of battery life like on Arm platform, but the part of the infographic above reads “worry-free day of battery life” so that you can “confidence to leave the charger …

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AMD A6-9220C & A4-9120C Low Power Processors Target Chromebooks

AMD A6-9220C Processor

Intel will usually release new low power processors under 10W TDP every year, but that has not been the case for AMD, with the company releasing several 12-15W processors in the recent past like Ryzen Embedded  V1000 series and the Ryzen 7 2700U processor I’m currently using my Ubuntu laptop. However, AMD has now announced two new A-series processors with a 6W TDP, namely A4-9120C and A6-9220C dual-core processors that specifically target Chromebooks. AMD A4-9120C key features: Processor – 2x CPU cores, 2x CPU threads @ 1.6 GHz / 2.4 GHz  (Boost) Cache – 160KB L1 cache, 1MB L2 cache GPU – Radeon R4 graphics with 3x GPU Cores up to 600 MHz, support for H.26x, VP9 decode Memory – Single channel @ 1866 MHz Video Output – HDMI and DisplayPort Process – 28nm CMOS Package – FT4 TDP – 6 watts AMD A6-9220C key features: Processor – 2x CPU cores, 2x CPU threads @ 1.8 GHz / 2.7 GHz  …

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